2. Contexts of organisational strategic management



By Alan Stretton, PhD (Hon)

Sydney, Australia




This is the second of a series of seven articles which identify and discuss a variety of key contexts which impact on the management of projects. The basic reason for developing this series is that there is far too little attention given to the contexts of projects in the relevant literature – particularly when you consider that, in practice, effective management of projects’ contexts is usually quite critical to achieving overall project management success.

The first article of this series (Stretton 2019e) identified six key types of project contexts. These were summarised pictorially into a combined model, depicted in skeleton format in

Figure 1: Outline project context model    

This second article is concerned with extending discussions on the first of the contexts developed in the first article, namely the context of organisational strategic management. The place of this context in the broader pictorial model is indicated in Figure 1 by the bolder typeface within the more heavily outlined sector.


I discussed aspects of this particular context in Stretton 2019e, under the following headings, as now summarised.

Project contributions to organisational strategic management

This section established that virtually all projects, no matter how originated, are, or soon become, direct components of organisational strategic plans and their execution. It therefore seemed reasonable to first consider projects in the context of the organisational strategies of which they are a part.

An organisational strategic management framework

Adding the project components of strategic initiatives to this framework

These two sections were represented as shown in Figure 2. It was acknowledged that there are no universally agreed sets of processes for either the strategic or project life-cycle frameworks, but it was contended that these rather broad-brush representations should be widely applicable.

Figure 2: An organisational strategic management framework, with project contributions

Adding other strategic work components to this framework

I have made the point in many previous articles that strategic initiatives comprise both projects and what I have described as other strategic work, which was discussed in some detail in Stretton 2019a. Components of the latter were added to Figure 2, and the combined representation abbreviated, as shown in Figure 3.

Figure 3: Abbreviated strategic management framework, PLC, & “Other strategic work” stages

More (with figures much more readable) …

To read entire article, click here


How to cite this article: Stretton, A. (2019). Title, Series on Project Contexts, article 1; PM World Journal, Volume VIII, Issue VI, July. Available online at https://pmworldlibrary.net/wp-content/uploads/2019/07/pmwj83-Jul2019-Stretton-pm-context-series-2-organisational-strategic-context2.pdf



About the Author

Alan Stretton, PhD      

Faculty Corps, University of Management
and Technology, Arlington, VA (USA)
Life Fellow, AIPM (Australia)



Alan Stretton is one of the pioneers of modern project management.  He is currently a member of the Faculty Corps for the University of Management & Technology (UMT), USA.  In 2006 he retired from a position as Adjunct Professor of Project Management in the Faculty of Design, Architecture and Building at the University of Technology, Sydney (UTS), Australia, which he joined in 1988 to develop and deliver a Master of Project Management program.   Prior to joining UTS, Mr. Stretton worked in the building and construction industries in Australia, New Zealand and the USA for some 38 years, which included the project management of construction, R&D, introduction of information and control systems, internal management education programs and organizational change projects.  He has degrees in Civil Engineering (BE, Tasmania) and Mathematics (MA, Oxford), and an honorary PhD in strategy, programme and project management (ESC, Lille, France).  Alan was Chairman of the Standards (PMBOK) Committee of the Project Management Institute (PMI®) from late 1989 to early 1992.  He held a similar position with the Australian Institute of Project Management (AIPM), and was elected a Life Fellow of AIPM in 1996.  He was a member of the Core Working Group in the development of the Australian National Competency Standards for Project Management.  He has published over 200 professional articles and papers.  Alan can be contacted at alanailene@bigpond.com.au.

To see more works by Alan Stretton, visit his author showcase in the PM World Library at http://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/alan-stretton/.